The meal: Crispy duck
If you only ever eat crispy duck from your local Chinese takeaway, it’s time to sharpen your cleaver and go it alone. The home-made version is easy to prepare, free from unhealthy MSG and trans fats – and mouth-wateringly moreish.
The swap: Hoi-sin sauce for honey and orange sauce
‘Crispy duck is usually served with hoi-sin sauce, which is packed with fattening sugar syrup,’ says Gray. ‘This recipe substitutes a honey and orange sauce, which is rich in metabolism-boosting iron and immunity-strengthening vitamin A.’
The bonus: More muscle, less inflammation
Duck is packed with muscle-building protein, and onion offers plenty of soothing quercetin.
The recipe: Ingredients (Serves 2)
1 duck, backbone removed / 1 small red cabbage / 2 carrots / 1 red onion / 6tbsp natural yogurt / Salt and pepper to taste / 4 handfuls of watercress, washed and drained / 100ml freshly squeezed orange juice / 1tbsp clear honey / 1 orange / 150ml rapeseed oil.
- Preheat your oven to 210°C.
- Flatten the duck by pressing it down firmly on a chopping board.
- Place the duck skin side up on a rack over a roasting tray and pierce the skin in several places with a sharp knife or metal skewer.
- Boil a kettle and pour the boiling water over the duck (discard the water), then pat it dry with kitchen roll and rub in salt and pepper.
- Place the duck in the oven and roast for 60-75 minutes or until it’s crisp and golden brown.
- Remove the duck from the oven and set it aside to rest for ten minutes.
- Remove all the skin and meat from the carcass and shred it using two forks. Place it on kitchen roll to remove excess oil.
Red cabbage coleslaw
- Remove the white core from the red cabbage with a sharp knife and discard it.
- Finely chop the cabbage with a sharp knife and place it in a mixing bowl.
- Peel and grate the carrots and add them to the bowl.
- Peel the red onion, cut it in half, finely slice it and add it to the carrot and cabbage.
- Add the natural yogurt and mix in thoroughly.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Honey and orange sauce
- Place the orange juice in a saucepan over a medium heat and bring it to the boil, then whisk in the honey.
- Pour the orange and honey mixture into a bowl and whisk in the rapeseed oil.
- Return the shredded crispy duck to the oven for five minutes to heat through.
- Spoon a pile of coleslaw into the middle of a serving plate and scatter the washed watercress around it, mixed with orange segments.
- Remove the crispy duck from the oven and place it on top of the red cabbage coleslaw.
- Liberally drizzle the honey and orange sauce over the duck.
The chef: Adam Gray
Adam Gray is executive chef at Skylon in the Royal Festival Hall, London. He has been a chef for 28 years and has held a Michelin star for 11. He cycles 30km a day, competes as a runner and trains in krav maga.
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